Black Beauty is a 1994 adaptation of the 1877 novel by Anna Sewell and it is the fifth film adaptation of the book. Like the novel, it is essentially the autobiography of a horse. Also like the novel, it depicts the ups and downs of Black Beauty's life, as he goes through a succession of owners. Some are kind, while others are quite cruel. Alan Cumming narrates the story and serves as Black Beauty's voice. Sean Bean, David Thewlis, and Peter Davison play some of Black Beauty's owners. It was the first movie directed by Caroline Thompson.
Unlike some of the other adaptations, the 1994 movie is fairly faithful to Sewell's book -- which was written to spotlight the often cruel treatment of horses. The movie follows suit and depicts horses being driven to exhaustion and forced to wear painful bearing reins that raised their heads high. The film is set in Victorian England.